Individuals with uncontrolled diabetes present a range of identifiable symptoms. An early diagnosis of uncontrolled diabetes is key as it can combat other health problems from developing.

Here are 10 symptoms that are linked to uncontrolled diabetes:

High blood glucose

The clearest sign of uncontrolled diabetes is high blood glucose levels.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a human’s glucose levels should be 80 – 130 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) before eating and below 180 mg/dL two hours after a meal.

To maintain a healthy blood glucose level, people should follow a healthy lifestyle and use the correct diabetes medication.

People who regularly have high blood pressure should speak to their doctor immediately.

Regular infections

Having high blood sugar levels can trigger the development of infections, such as cystitis, thrush, foot ulcers, cellulitis, the flu and gastrointestinal infections.

People with high blood sugar are especially at risk of having regular yeast infections as it is known to feed on sugar.

Individuals with diabetes take longer to recover from an infection and are at risk of it worsening.

By delaying treating an infection, people with diabetes are at risk of developing sepsis or requiring an amputation.

People who detect any changes to their skin should speak to their doctor immediately.

Urinating more

 A typical symptom of uncontrolled type 1 and type 2 diabetes is regular urination.

A normal person usually releases around one to three quarts of urine every day. However, an individual with diabetes can release up to 20 quarts of urine per day because their bodies have to clear the blood of extra glucose.

In addition, high blood glucose causes people to drink more regularly, resulting in them weeing more.

Feeling thirsty

Feeling extremely thirsty is a common sign of uncontrolled type 1 and type 2 diabetes.

Symptoms include:

Feeling extremely thirsty is most likely to happen when an individual’s blood glucose levels are higher than 250 mg/dL.

Being dehydrated can also trigger diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) – a serious complication which develops when your body doesn’t have enough insulin to allow blood sugar into your cells for use as energy.

Signs of DKA are:

  • A loss of consciousness
  • Confusion
  • Stomach pain
  • Fruity-smelling breath
  • Dizziness

People who experience symptoms of DKA should seek hospital treatment immediately.

Increased hunger levels

People with uncontrolled diabetes will feel hungrier as their cells struggle to access glucose because of a lack of insulin production. It can also happen when the body do not know how to use the insulin correctly.

Individuals with uncontrolled diabetes are not likely to put weight on even though they are more likely to overeat due to an increased appetite. This indicates that their body is not receiving the right amount of energy it needs.

Losing weight

Being unable to absorb glucose can trigger weight loss. Frequent urination also causes somebody to lose weight.

People should speak to their doctor immediately if they are eating lots of food but losing weight.

Fruity-smelling breath

High blood glucose levels can make an individuals breath smell sweeter.

The body breaks down fat when it is unable to get to the glucose. This process produces a chemical called acetone, which is known for having a fruity odour.

Kidney complications

High blood sugar levels can destroy the blood vessels, especially the ones located in the kidneys. This can trigger the development of kidney disease.

Signs of kidney disease include:

  • Dark urine
  • Bloody urine
  • UTIs
  • Lower back pain
  • Frothy urine

In most cases, symptoms of kidney disease are only identifiable when damage has already occurred.

Heart complications

Having uncontrolled diabetes increases a person’s risk of developing cardiovascular disease. People with diabetes are also at risk of developing a stroke.

Symptoms of these conditions include abnormal heart rhythms, high blood pressure and chest pain.

Numb and tingling feelings

Having high blood glucose levels for a long period of time can cause severe nerve damage, especially in the hands and feet.

This can cause the damaged area to feel numb and tingly. Nerve damage in people with diabetes is known as diabetic neuropathy.

People should speak to their doctor immediately if they experience these symptoms.

Get our free newsletters

Stay up to date with the latest news, research and breakthroughs.

You May Also Like

Top diabetes professor drafts risk assessment document for frontline COVID-19 staff

The health and wellbeing of frontline NHS staff has been prioritised among…

Conversation about doctors’ appointments occurring virtually rumbles on

More than half of GP appointments are still being delivered remotely in…

Type 2 diabetes found to be a ‘significant risk factor’ among stroke victims

More evidence has been published which supports that diabetes is a “significant…